Thursday, February 5, 2015

"The Crane Wife" by Patrick Ness Named Notable Book by ALA

The Crane Wife by Katrina Pallon

I will admit I know very little about Patrick Ness, not having read any of his books, but Heidi has mentioned him on SurLaLune a couple of times so I thought I'd bring you notice of his latest folklore-based novel, especially since it was just named as one of ALA's Notable Books for 2015.

(And, as a bonus today I'm adding some lovely illustrations, some of which I hadn't seen before today. Credit is under each image.)
The Crane Wife by Kat Leyh
Refreshingly, this story is based on a little-known-to-the-Western-world romantic Japanese fairy tale (one of the better known ones that's usually included in multicultural collections) and was written by a man, both of which make it notable as well.
The Crame Wife by Janey-Jane

The Crane Wife is based on the fairy tale of the same name and seems to follow key aspects of the plot (at least to a certain point), though the setting is more urban and more modern.
The Crane Wife by Eno Keo

Two critically acclaimed authors who draw on folklore and fairy tales, Eowyn Ivy (The Snow Child) and Ali Shaw (The Girl With Glass Feet), both praise the book, which, despite other mixed reviews, is more than enough for me to put it in my shopping cart straight away!

Here's the synopsis, care of Penguin Press:
A magical novel, based on a Japanese folk tale, that imagines how the life of a broken-hearted man is transformed when he rescues an injured white crane that has landed in his backyard. 
George Duncan is an American living and working in London. At forty-eight, he owns a small print shop, is divorced, and is lonelier than he realizes. All of the women with whom he has relationships eventually leave him for being too nice.  
But one night he is waked by an astonishing sound—a terrific keening, which is coming from somewhere in his garden. When he investigates he finds a great white crane, a bird taller than himself. It has been shot through the wing with an arrow. Moved more than he can say, George struggles to take out the arrow from the bird’s wing, saving its life before it flies away into the night sky. 
The Crane Wife by pageboy
The next morning, a shaken George tries to go about his daily life, retreating to the back of his store and making cuttings from discarded books—a harmless personal hobby—when a woman walks through the front door of the shop. Her name is Kumiko, and she asks George to help her with her own artwork. George is dumbstruck by her beauty and her enigmatic nature and begins to fall desperately in love with her. She seems to hold the potential to change his entire life, if he could only get her to reveal the secret of who she is and why she has brought her artwork to him. 
The Crane Wife by Gennady Spirin (retold by Odds Bodkin)
 Witty, magical, and romantic, The Crane Wife is a story of passion and sacrifice that resonates on the level of dream and myth. It is a novel that celebrates the creative imagination and the disruptive power of love.

And here's the author introducing us to his novel:
Has anyone read this? I'm very curious now!

1 comment:

  1. Sounds interesting. I hadn't heard of this tale before. Might be something to suggest for the library.